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Poster: Phil_ Date: Nov 11, 2011 9:28pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: 'Stella Maris'

Please move http://www.archive.org/details/StellaMaris_665 here.

Thought for Today:

Copyright laws do not seem to reward the people who deserve a reward, but maintain an inhibitory environment for those who could benefit most from a truly free society. That being said, I know a few artists (including some actors in film and television) who are unwittingly 'victims' of copyright infringement. For example, I know that as I watch one of my (actor) friend's shows (currently in syndication on cable television), she has no idea that there are a hundred p2p-heads (for lack of an appropriate word) online circulating a rip of her studio's DVD compilation, on Usenet or some unnamed p2p network.

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Poster: Hg80 Date: Nov 12, 2011 6:50am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: 'Stella Maris'

And thanks for uploading "Stella Maris".

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Poster: Hg80 Date: Nov 12, 2011 6:47am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: 'Stella Maris'

I think it is relevant that this issue has surfaced for discussion.

Altered silent films.

The representation of silent films as being colorized, tinted, music bed, etc. is most confusing and for the most part a product of contemporary manipulators whose motivation is probably a personal preference and/or monetary [a novel methodology of selling a product...a new wrapping for a forgotten film]. I have viewed hundreds of silent films and the memory of their presentation is not always clear. Literature discussing the director's intent in tinting for example is non-existent. Tinting carries a specific mood or atmosphere and it is also an extra expense to the film's post production as well as time spent. When I see tinted silent films now, I am just at a loss to verify if it was original and research results are scant with information. [For example, I see that you have uploaded "Stella Maris" which is heavily tinted and I frankly do not recall the film was tinted at all.] These are important things to consider in a film's analysis. The music bed...I just ignore by turning off in most cases. Colorization is rare i.e., as in several Georges Melies' films. I do not think the above three criteria is sufficient for not uploading a film...the documentation of the original presentation of the film just isn't there in most cases.

If such a film is uploaded and contested, hard evidence and documentation must be required. The Internet Archive is a vast repository of materials--not just film and they are, as I understand, mostly staffed by volunteers who may not necessarily be knowledgeable or have resources at hand to provide the required information for the removal of an item. Sure, some items are obviously under legal copyright. Sometimes, it is best to upload and see who has a legitimate claim of ownership. These are simple legal issues whereby the claimant simply requests [with documentation] the removal of a film. The Internet Archive has acted responsibly in the past and will honor a bona fide removal claim...the lawyers won't have to be fed.

In my field of scholarship, I have to constantly deal with copyright laws when securing a document [a dissertation appearing in say "Physical Review Letters" or "Project MUSE"]. Many of the desired documents are held and distributed by clearing houses ["PubMed" or "ScienceDirect"]. These organizations are not really interested in protecting the intellectual property of the author but to sell the document. I have seen an esoteric 16 page dissertation list at $65. That's crazy.



It is perhaps time for new rules to be written for an easier application of copyright protocol...especially for the cloudy realm of silent films.

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Poster: guyzilla Date: Nov 12, 2011 12:52pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: 'Stella Maris'

In regard to the first paragraph of you post, I do have some doubt as to whether most silent era films were shown with tinting. Maybe they were, maybe they weren't. Perhaps when films get "restored" the post supervisor may just go with what he thinks should go into the work. Recently, a local tv station aired a version of THE CABINET OF DR. CALIGARI, complete with tinting, new titles, new music, and DIALOGUE. I thought the end result was abominable. So the question is;
Is it restoration or is it just tweaking the original work to suit a more modern taste?

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Poster: Hg80 Date: Nov 12, 2011 1:35pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: 'Stella Maris'

It is odd that you would ask that for I was watching the completely restored "Lost Horizon". The film has been restored only insofar as replacing long lost footage and where the film is missing and the soundtrack extant, black leader is inserted.

I know of very few original films that were tinted and what we have now is someone's idea to enhance the film for retail purposes. I can recall [at the Internet Archives] copies of "Nosferatu", "The Lost World", "Phantom of the Opera" being subject to a strange music bed and massive tinting while "The Golem" had no tinting.

In your example, I would imagine that it was a marketing ploy...and probably a terrible one at that.

For me, "restoration" is concerned with the physical issues of a film...to restore to the original as much as possible and to make the presentation as clean as possible. This would involve frame replacements, sprocket repair, replacement of lost scenes [images or sound], and thanks to computer software, celluloid scratches and abrasions can be removed. Even the film speed can be adjusted to resemble the original projection. And I have heard of software that can mellow the old contrasty prints to more grays.

Unfortunately, you are correct about the adjustments for modern tastes. A recent example is the colorization of "The Night of the Living Dead"...the atmospheric mood totally disappeared. The tinting and choice of a music bed of the silent films we have discussed were probably done for that very reason. I am sure many thought that they were doing the viewer a favor but all it does is dilute the original production and in some cases give a false history of the film.

As a footnote, I noticed that someone uploaded [again] "Killers from Space" with this claim...

"This copy of the movie has the original green tinting used in many scenes, which is missing from other copies...."

http://www.archive.org/details/Killers_from_Space_1954

Neither does my memory of the film support this nor can I find any verification documentation.

Go figure.

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Poster: billbarstad Date: Nov 12, 2011 2:32pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: 'Stella Maris'

A link on the page for Killers from Space leads to an article by David Christenson, who believes that there was tinting. The second to last paragraph reads:

"Lest you think that this collection was just thrown together, this DVD uses some of the best source materials I’ve ever seen for these films. For example, my cheap old copy of Killers From Space is now replaced by a version without the missing frames and fuzzy soundtrack, and even restores a green tint to the alien sequences. "

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Poster: Hg80 Date: Nov 12, 2011 2:40pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: 'Stella Maris'

Well, that may be, but I would like to see something a bit more official. It would be quirky for the original to have the green tint even though it is quite effective. Thanks.

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Poster: billbarstad Date: Nov 12, 2011 2:48pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: 'Stella Maris'

There's also a email link for the author at the bottom of the page. Perhaps he can give more information.

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Poster: Hg80 Date: Nov 14, 2011 6:54am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: 'Stella Maris'

I am still researching the issue of the green tinted scene in "Killers From Space". I went back to David's page to see if I missed anything and thought I might as well send an email. Upon clicking his name I was told that I did not have an Internet connection to complete the request. Bizarre.

So I did some refined Google searches and wound up at amazon.com's site..."Killers From Space (1954) [Remastered Edition]". I read all 32 reviews and nothing referenced the green tint. As a matter of fact the consensus sustained curiosity as to what made this a "remastered" film.

It may remain a mystery. Even though I do not remember the green tint, it may be true based on the comments of the "low budget" characteristic of the film...they had to do something creative, I guess.

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Poster: Hg80 Date: Nov 12, 2011 3:14pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: 'Stella Maris'

You have been elected. :)

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Poster: Hg80 Date: Nov 12, 2011 1:54pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: 'Stella Maris'

Additional

The well-known film distribution company Criterion stated the following...

"Each film is presented uncut, in its original aspect ratio, as its maker intended it to be seen. Every time we start work on a film, we track down the best available film elements in the world, use state-of-the-art telecine equipment and a select few colorists capable of meeting our rigorous standards, then take time during the film-to-video digital transfer to create the most pristine possible image and sound. Whenever possible, we work with directors and cinematographers to ensure that the look of our releases does justice to their intentions."

That is "restoration".

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Poster: Phil_ Date: Nov 12, 2011 7:37am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: 'Stella Maris'

That must be extremely frustrating. Film education, for example, is wrested of valuable capital when this happens.

I uploaded the film with tinting to demonstrate a point. I think there is enough vagueness in the way copyright law is currently applied in the US to justify this.

Read this post, especially near the bottom:
http://www.archive.org/post/267078/those-watermarks-where-video-sources-are-defaced-by-them

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Poster: Hg80 Date: Nov 12, 2011 8:08am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: 'Stella Maris'

Well, I think you are taking the correct action in regards to "Stella Maris"...a challenge must be made, a debate, and a definitive decision.

I had to chuckle about the "watermarks"...reminds me of cats and dogs spraying for territorial reasons. A watermark is virtually meaningless for a film.